Brian Griese had established himself in a second career that had been more successful than his first as an 11-year quarterback in the NFL.
ESPN chose to go in another direction for its “Monday Night Football” crew this year, but the former quarterback ended up landing on his feet in San Francisco as the 49ers new quarterbacks coach.
Griese finally spoke on his replacement and former employer.
“I got to a point where I needed a new challenge. That, coupled with the moment where ESPN decided to go in a different direction — I’m not saying they didn’t — but they got a bigger fish. I understand the dynamics of that. I always knew that that possibility and probably likelihood was out there. But I did get to do it at the highest level for two years, and I loved every minute of it.
So I had a decision to make at that point. This opportunity came up, and it was a challenge that I wanted to run towards and not away from. I’m excited about it. I’m rejuvenated by the opportunity to get back in the arena to compete, to win and lose and lead and be part of something bigger than yourself. That’s a real gift.”
Griese has a big challenge in his first opportunity at coaching at any level, tasked with helping last year’s No. 3 overall pick Trey Lance develop into the franchise quarterback the Niners believe he could be after trading three first-round picks to get him.
Griese started 83 games in his 11 NFL seasons.